ISGAN is the short name for the International Energy Agency (IEA) Technology Collaboration Programme (TCP) for a Co-operative Programme on Smart Grids (ISGAN – International Smart Grids Action Network). It is also an initiative of the Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) and was formally established at CEM2 in Abu Dhabi, in 2011 as an Implementing Agreement under a framework of the International Energy Agency (IEA).
The International Smart Grid Action Network (ISGAN) creates a strategic platform to support high-level government attention and action for the accelerated development and deployment of smarter, cleaner electricity grids around the world.
ISGAN recognizes that robust, reliable, and smart electric grids play a key role in enabling greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reductions through the:
Management of electricity demand
Integration of growing supplies of both utility-scale and distributed small-scale renewable energy systems
Accommodation of an increasing number of electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles
Improvement of operational efficiency
Application of energy-efficient technologies at their full potential.
Smart grids also enable better utilization of existing electricity generation assets.
In coordination with the International Energy Agency (IEA) and others, ISGAN seeks to improve the potential for smart grid technologies at country, regional, and global levels.
ISGAN’s vision is to accelerate progress on key aspects of smart grid policy, technology, and investment through voluntary participation by governments and their designees in specific projects and programs. Its activities center foremost on those aspects of the smart grid where governments have regulatory authority, expertise, convening power, or other leverage, focusing on five principal areas:
Policy standards and regulation
Finance and business models
Technology system development
Workforce skills and knowledge
Users and consumers engagement.
IGSAN facilitates dynamic knowledge sharing, technical assistance, peer review and, where appropriate, project coordination among government participants.
In July 2010, the International Smart Grid Action Network (ISGAN) was launched in Washington, D.C., at the first Clean Energy Ministerial (CEM) meeting, a forum for energy and environment ministers and stakeholders from 23 countries and the European Union.
ISGAN evolved from the CEM’s high-level attention and commitment to take concrete steps—both policies and programs—that accelerate the global transition to clean energy.
Then, in April 2011, ISGAN was formally established as the International Energy Agency (IEA) Implementing Agreement for a Co-operative Programme on Smart Grids, operating under the IEA Framework for International Energy Technology Co-operation. ISGAN participants report periodically on progress and projects to the CEM, in addition to satisfying all IEA Implementing Agreement reporting requirements.